Monday, July 11, 2016

Harvest Monday - July 11, 2016


The weather has remained hot, hot but we still have some cool weather crops coming out of the garden.  The big harvest this past week was shelling peas:

Aladdin Shelling Peas

I am growing 2 varieties – Sabre & Aladdin – and both have produced admirably well.  Both varieties produce a rather concentrated picking and almost all of the pods were harvested over the week.  Since these are shelling peas, I prefer to tally them after they are shelled which amounts to roughly half their weight when in the pods (i.e. the first picking of Aladdin resulted in 1,375 gr/3 lbs of podded peas = 644 gr/1.4 lbs of shelled peas).

Some of the peas were used fresh, but the bulk of them were frozen.  Even though the vines look empty now, I’m sure there will be a few stragglers that I don’t find until I pull them – I actually count on that as I then dry & save them to use for seed next year.

The next new harvest this past week were favas.  I’m growing two varieties this year and some of the Extra Precoce Violetto were ready to pick:

Extra Precoce Violetto Fava Beans
 
The pods were not overly impressive this year – many weren’t filled out properly where half the beans in the pod were fine while the other half were shriveled.  I also seem to recall that the pods were larger last year with more beans per pod.

Favas don’t like the heat, so that may be one factor.  Also, as this was one of the last beds to have irrigation installed in it, the soil may have been a bit too dry while the pods were developing.

Shelled Favas
 
One last new harvest…a Garden Sweet cucumber!

1st Garden Sweet cucumber surrounded by
Oregon Sugar Pod & Golden Sweet snow peas
 
I almost missed this guy as it was hiding near the ground behind some foliage.  My mom was over this past weekend and she spotted it…and it certainly lived up to its name.  Having been eating hothouse cucumbers for the past few months, I almost forgot what a fresh one tasted like!

The snow peas and 1st sowing of sugar snaps are coming to an end.  The sugar snaps are only a trickle right now but the 2nd sowing is just starting to produce.

Sugar Snap Peas
 
I don’t see a whole lot of flowers on the vines, though, so we shall see how that goes.

We're still harvesting the Kolibri kohlrabi, shown here with some Oregon Sugar Pod snow peas:

Kolibri Kohlrabi & Oregon Sugar Pod Snow Peas
 
There are a few Kolibri left in the ground sizing up and I’m hoping that once they are done, the Kossak variety will be nice and big & ready to pick.

The last of the turnips were harvested:

White Lady Turnips & Kolibri Kohlrabi
 
They were being completely overshadowed by the broccoli so I doubt the small ones would have grown any larger.  The turnip leaves were a bit mangled by slugs, I’m guessing, so I picked out the best ones and the rest went to the compost pile.

I’ll be sowing another round of turnips in the fall & am hoping that cooler weather will make for some sweeter turnips.

I’ve been harvesting herbs here and there as well although they don’t end up in the tally unless I harvest a large batch.  The basil is doing really well again this year – no sign of basil down mildew:

Eleanora Basil
 
Also harvested but not photographed was a batch of lettuce, a batch of strawberries and one small broccoli head.

My harvest totals this week were:

Fava Beans (shelled) – 314 grams (0.69 lbs)
Broccoli – 102 grams (0.22 lbs)
Cucumbers – 126 grams (0.28 lbs)
Kohlrabi – 1,681 grams (3.71 lbs)
Lettuce – 1,062 grams (2.34 lbs)
Snap Peas – 404 grams (0.89 lbs)
Snow Peas – 1,222 grams (2.69 lbs)
Shelling Peas (shelled) – 2,332 grams (5.14 lbs)
Turnips – 1,280 grams (2.82 lbs)
Turnip Greens – 326 grams (0.72 lbs)
Strawberries – 214 grams (0.47 lbs)

Total for Week – 9,063 grams (19.98 lbs)

Total to Date – 35.84 kg (79.01 lbs)

To see what everyone else has been harvesting over the past week, head on over to Our Happy Acres where Dave is our host for Harvest Mondays.

In other non-harvest related news, I’m off to the Garden Bloggers Fling on Thursday, so I’ll be (ironically) offline for a while.  I’m so looking forward to it – re-connecting with all of the wonderful bloggers I met last year, meeting new people and, of course, visiting the amazing gardens!  It will be my first time in Minneapolis, so that will certainly add to the adventure.

I’ve almost finished a post on one of the ornamental beds in our front yard and I’m hoping to post it before I leave but we shall see.  There is a lot to do before I go but one of the main items on my TO DO list has been ticked off….the drip irrigation is FINISHED!

Question:  How do you get a drip system finished ASAP?  Answer:  Book a trip to go away and then let your husband know that he will have to water the beds if it isn't in place before you leave :)

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things” ~~ Robert Brault

32 comments:

  1. Nice harvests Margaret. How nice to get the first cucumber (mine are not there yet). I'm glad you got your drip irrigation system finished--it really is a time-saver. Just make sure you have plenty of spare parts (valves, emitters, connectors) on hand as they constantly break.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Will - The drip is amazing & I can already see a big improvement in how veg are growing in the beds that have had it for a while now. I'll make sure to add a few extra parts to my next order, just in case.

      Delete
  2. Oh how I love shelling peas! I'm impressed that you were able to shell and freeze some without devouring them. That seems to be what happens in my kitchen! Congrats on your first cucumber of the year, it looks like summer is coming your way. Have fun at the Garden Bloggers Fling. I wish I had gone to it when it was in Asheville- it sounds like so much fun.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We have so many peas, including the sugar snaps and snow peas that it wasn't too difficult not to munch on them; although a few still found their way into our mouth instead of the bowl ;) And the Fling really is so much fun; you should consider going one of these years!

      Delete
  3. Nice harvests, Margaret. I gave up on favas because they take too much room for what you get. Nice job on the turnips, wish I had some but only a couple of seeds germinated. Too hot and dry to try now, maybe later this summer for the fall.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They do take up quite a bit of room, but you can't find fresh favas around here very often, so they are a real treat. I'm also planning to experiment with a fall crop of peas in that spot after the favas are done and if it works out, then the bed will have done double duty.

      Delete
  4. Have fun at the Fling! In my garden the Kossak follows the Kolibri nicely. I also have to say none of my Kolibri could match the 500g one you harvested!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Dave - I'm really looking forward to the break and the best part is that I'll have no responsibilities other than where to go for dinner...that's the life!

      I think that the Kolibi/Kossak combination is going to work out very well - I just have to remember to space them both properly next time!

      Delete
  5. Isn't it great to be able to pick such a varied harvest at this time of year? Your Fava beans definitely look very different to mine - they are very short and stubby (though you will have read what I said about "Longpods"!)The Basil is also very different to the type I grow. I normally have "Sweet Genovese", which has leaves much broader than your variety. The only way Jane will eat Basil is when it's made into pesto, so we have lots of pesto! I wish I had enough peas to make it worth freezing them. Frozen peas are actually sometimes much better than so-called fresh ones - the shop-bought ones are often old and floury, but the frozen ones are picked and packed at the perfect stage.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are quite right about the peas - before I grew them I would only purchase them frozen as the "fresh" were not only much more expensive, but lacking in flavour.

      I did try growing "regular" basil a few years ago - I think it may have been Genovese - but it was decimated by basil downy mildew so I've only grown "Eleanora" since then as it's the only variety that I know of that is BDM resistant.

      Delete
  6. I hooked now on growing my own shelling peas, now that I've figured out how to fit them into my beds and rotations. Sabre did really well for me too and produced over a few weeks which I'm guessing is because of our long mostly mild spring weather (this year at least). The color of that kohlrabi is just stunning and I'm tempted to give it another try! That first cucumber of the year is just wonderful, as are so many of the firsts of the year, every year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not sure who started the rumour that you can't get a good enough crop of shelling peas for them to be worth growing. Considering they brought in over 5 lbs in my short season and I still have enough time to fit in another crop, I would say they are well worth it, especially as most of us are not able to purchase fresh peas (that are worth eating anyhow).

      It does seem that I rave about this first and that first all the time, but each and every one is so exciting and duly savoured!

      Delete
  7. It is always interesting to compare gardens when we are in two different growing regions and yet our zones are pretty close. Your harvest is tremendous, while we have yet to see a cucumber, and peas are still being picked. Favas....oh gosh yes, they love it cool. The best year I had was when I pushed them (newly germinated with the tail showing)into the almost frozen raised bed soil that was covered with lexan for the winter. They started to grow as soon as they could and not even any aphids. So a lesson learned there. Should try that again ;-) Thanks for your tip about Eleanora being BDM resistant. Bren

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Bren...I too enjoy seeing what others in similar zones are harvesting, especially Canadians!

      That is a wonderful tip on favas - this is only my 2nd year growing them so I still have a lot to learn. I'll definitely be making a note to give your early sowing method a try...perhaps we can both give it a go and compare notes for next year :)

      And do try Eleanora if BDM is an issue - I purchased my seed from William Dam (www.damseeds.ca). I'll likely try other basil varieties again at some point in the future, but for now I'm more than happy sticking with Eleanora.

      Delete
  8. Another impressive harvest. Oh, and a cuke already--YUM! You're so right about fresh from the garden-beats store bought any day.
    Have fun at the fling and take TONS of pictures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Sue...the tons of pictures will definitely NOT be a problem. Sorting them out afterward, now that's a whole other story :)

      Delete
  9. Great harvests. I don't know how you manage to get your peas to the freezer though, it's so tempting to eat them as you shell them. Enjoy your time at the fling and loved your little conundrum at the end, that made me chuckle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are very tempting, aren't they - good thing we had a good crop of snow peas to take the edge off, so to speak! And I'm also harvesting peas at the farm and let me tell you, you CAN get your fill when you are munching on them over a couple of hours while harvesting :)

      Ha ha...my husband is VERY relieved that he won't have to worry about the garden while I'm away. And I am too as who knows what I would find when I got back!

      Delete
  10. I'm envious! But you deserve all the peas you can get, because you work so hard for them. Cheers, and see you soon in Minneapolis!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Helen! So looking forward to it...as I'm sure you are since this time, you can just sit back and relax :)

      Delete
  11. Fabulous! I think I'm going to pull my kohlrabi as they are just not showing any bulb at all. I can't seem to grow them. Yours look perfect, I'm envious!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Susie - I have a few Kolibri seedlings that I sowed after the initial round and they aren't bulking up either. The original sowing was shading them out, so now that most of those are gone, I'm waiting a bit longer to pull the stragglers, just in case.

      Delete
  12. Wonderful garden produce. Those shelling peas look so yummy and wish my sugar peas were still producing. You are lucky to have one cuke. I have not had any yet. Have a great time at the Gardener's Blogger Fling! Nancy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Nancy! Yes, my sugar snap peas, even the 2nd sowing, are just fizzling in all the heat. I'll probably try a 2nd sowing again next year though as our super hot weather for the past couple of months really is an anomoly.

      Delete
  13. Yum, yum. I love Sugar Snap Peas and I had some for lunch today. And White Salad Turnips are tasty, too. Looking forward to visiting again in Minneapolis! Safe travels!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sugar snaps are so crunchy and juicy - they are our favourite pea, for sure! I'm really looking forward to meeting up again as well - and safe travels to you too!

      Delete
  14. Thanks to you, I'm growing the same basil and mine is doing well, too! Yay!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hurray!! I was so upset when all my basil came down with BDM a couple of years ago and then even more upset when I read that it was pretty much an epidemic for practically all basil varieties - Eleanora saved the day (and the pesto) :)

      Delete
  15. I am eagerly looking forward to the day hen I am shelling peas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fingers crossed you won't be waiting too much longer!

      Delete
  16. Even with the heat I bet you have a yummy low grocery bill! Nancy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Even though the kids are growing bigger, the grocery bill is getting smaller...thanks to the garden!

      Delete

I appreciate and thoroughly enjoy all of your lovely comments :) Please note that in order to foil those pesky spammers, comment moderation has been enabled for older comments.